On this Cicero says what will later be echoed by that great Antonine, Aurelius, and later by Shakespeare when they write the world is just a stage and each must play their own part.
Away, then, with those follies such as that it is miserable to die before our time. What time do you mean? That of nature? But she had only lent you life, as she might lend you money, without fixing any certain time for its repayment. Have you any grounds of complaint, then, that she recalls it at her pleasure?
No, this is not true. That title is my attempt at clickbait. I hope it works.
So if you are reading this, I guess the clickbait worked and we are in business. This post has nothing to do with Shakespeare. We are not going to discuss a pound of flesh or to do or not to do or even much ado about nothing. But because we have mentioned Shakespeare, we may say the world is just a stage and each one must play their part and depart.
Many times when I blog or tweet about Christianity, there is some backlash from religionists who claim atheists are only against their religion. The last census we had put the percentage of Christians in Kenya at above 80%. Anytime I throw a stone, there is 8 in 10 chance, it will fall on a person who claims to be a Christian. Most of these believers think without their death cult, we would have no laws. That society would be living in a state of debauchery and anarchy. Voodoo believers are not knocking on doors are carrying open air crusades in our neighbourhoods. Maybe, just maybe if Christians kept their beliefs a private matter, they would not be a subject of interest. Just saying.
When I have written Jesus did not exist, I have been often asked if Socrates, Buddha or Confucius lived. The point here being that as historical figures, there is scant information regarding their lives and they should be treated the same way we treat Jesus. I don’t know about other atheists, but no one is going to hell because they think Socrates is a creation of Plato. In fact, you will not be punished by anyone for thinking the Republic is Plato’s Utopia. That it is not possible to have such a government of philosopher kings. In general, it has no real world effects whether one doubts the existence of Socrates. For all his teachings, Buddha said live the good life. But the Christians make extra-ordinary claims about their Jesus with a rider that those who don’t believe will suffer for eternity plus one.
I demand more to work with. The gospels will not do. They are inconsistent and contradict each other. Your pastor’s testimony will not cut it either. If my life or any other life is to depend on the sayings of Jesus, you are going to have to work hard to give evidence that he lived. Until you are able to do this, don’t bring up Julius Caesar or Buddha.
Or maybe just one.
Who was William Shakespeare or rather who wrote the plays attributed to Shakespeare?
A bonus question; since Dante’s time has the Satan’s CV been rewritten? Could we update it?
It was Shakespeare who wrote the immortal words in Romeo and Juliet
What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;
which raises the question of what the godless should call themselves. I know fully well am not the first one to write on this topic, but that has never stopped me from adding my two cents to any topic.
Many of us identify as atheist, the problem with this label is that it doesn’t tell you what I believe. As has been said by other interlocutors, it has a negative connotation. It doesn’t tell you also that I don’t believe in ghosts, unicorns, fairies which would raise the interesting question whether I should call myself a-ghost, a-fairies and so on. It also doesn’t tell you what I think of the Hindoo belief of reincarnation or nirvana and so the like.
The second very interesting issue here, is the fact that it the Judaic cults that have the issue of a personal celestial dictator who is concerned about who you have sex with, sends a son to die and preaches that you shouldn’t get married if you can because the world is about to end and has its chosen people. In this respect I should be Non-Judaic. I have no belief in the existence of their cults’ god and so much more.
What then do I think we the godless[ whatever god means] should call themselves, if they must, which in my view is both an affirmation of belief and also deals with all the superstitions that have been with us since man began to believe and think. This label is Naturalist. It is an affirmation that you believe that nature is all there is, no ghosts, angels, afterlife and that phenomena follow religiously according to the laws of nature everywhere all the time. Together with being a naturalist, I subscribe to secularism that is state and church should be separated and am also a humanist.